Protesters miss QLD mining minister

Mining protesters failed to have their desired effect on Queensland mining minister Stirling Hinchcliffe yesterday, when they allowed him to walk straight past because they didn’t recognise him.

The groups opposed to mining had promised a large scale protest aimed largely at the minister at the opening day of the Surat Basin Mining and Energy Expo.

But the 100 voices fell on deaf ears, as Hinchcliffe, who officially opened the event, was already gone before they realised who he was.

President of the Lock the Gate Alliance Drew Hutton told the Toowoomba Chronicle the group is not against all mining, but wants the government to impose tougher regulations for mining permits.

“We are not anti-mining, we are just calling on the State Government to protect our valuable assets,” Hutton said.

“The State needs legislation that protects residential areas, good agricultural land, sensitive environments and valuable aquifers from mining.

“The government just needs to be a little more responsible and just not think of the cash,” he said.

A protester said she recognised mining was important in the state, but wants the government to ensure residents are safe.

“All we are calling for is responsible mining complete with community consultation,” Nova Wright said.

“There really needs to be more funding made available for cleaner energies like solar power."

A spokesperson for Hincliffe told Australian Mining the minister met with three protesters that afternoon to discuss their concerns.

Image: The Toowoomba Chronicle

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